Saturday, July 6, 2013

Fearless, by Eric Blehm

Fearless, by Eric Blehm, tells the inspiring true story of Adam Brown, an elite Navy SEAL, devoted husband, and father, who was killed on duty as a member of Team SIX.  While the book does discuss both his training, and to a lesser extent some of his missions as a SEAL, what this really is is a story about Adam the man... from the carefree recklessness of his youth, to the drug addiction that threatened to consume him over and over, to the charming but exasperating young man that his wife fell in love with, to the faith that ultimately led him to choose a life of honor, compassion, and courage.

Adam's story, largely told through the words of those who knew and loved him best, both inspired me and broke my heart.  What struck me the most about him was his undeniable passion, in everything he did.  Adam Brown was a man who lived life at 150%, all the time.  The word, "can't" just wasn't in his vocabulary.  This was evident again and again, from the time he was a small child jumping off the roof of his house, to his fighting his way back through the grips of drugs, to the numerous injuries that should have ended his Naval career, right up until what would be his final mission.  He was a man who literally gave it all.  He was by all accounts a hands-on and fun-loving father, and a devoted and loyal husband.  His family and his faith were far and away the most important things in his life.

The thing that transformed this book from great to outstanding was the inclusion of all the little personal (and often hysterical) stories about what made Adam who he was:  a crazy, passionate, fearless, accident-prone goof ball who loved God, his family, his country, and his work.  Not only did I feel like I got more than a glimpse into who he was, I felt like I genuinely would have liked him.  I rooted for him and cheered him on as I read, and found myself dreading reaching the end of the book.

Even though I knew how it was going to end, a part of me was hoping and praying that somehow it would end differently... that somehow the past could be altered, and this time he would live.

It's a word that I don't use lightly, but Adam Brown was a hero.  I feel significantly touched having read this book, and am grateful to those who instinctively knew that his was a story that had to be told.

*WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group provided this book to me for free in exchange for this honest review as part of their Blogging for Books program.*

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